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Jan. 13, 1831.]
Minister to Russia.
(H. OF R.
ous friend the Autocrat of all the Russias; but when, or presume, considered, that the representatives of the peo. for what other region? Here the Secretary is cautiously ple have no other vocation but to vote the promised and silent. The chairman of the Committee on Foreign Re- required compensation. He certainly succeeded, even in lations has been equally so. Can any gentleman of this that short time, in rendering himself very distinguished committee either indoctrinate us into this great mystery at the court of Russia; and, therefore, it may be said, in of State, or give us the light of a single fact concerning giving equal celebrity to his country. Ile certainly gave the voyages and travels of this minister of ours, and let us voice to every tongue of rumor in both hemispheres. know whether he is now moving or stationary? Where is His mission will hereafter be regarded as an era in our John Randolph? Where is our ambassador, for whose foreign relations; and the residence of Randolph at the public services Mr. Van Buren is calling upon us to pro- court of Russia will long be talked of as a phenomenon in vide a salary? We are told that he is not where he was diplomacy. For this we must give him the 9,000 dollars sent; and that he had permission to go thence when and demanded by the Secretary: whither he might choose; but whether he is, in pursuit of What could such a man do for his country in the chahealth, now basking in the sunshine of Naples, or, for a racter of a foreign minister? Just what he has done: like purpose, traversing "the fog-wrapt island of Bri- which was very much like what each man in the nation of tain," we are left to learn from the same authentic docu- all parties, who knew him, must have expected he would ments from which the chairman of the Committee on do. Genius he certainly has; for he is original, and unlike Foreign Relations seems to have taken advice-rumor and all other men. If you please, he is eloquent; but if so, the public papers. These have talked of his where that eloquence is, like himself, sui generis. These have abouts;” and, though, without giving daily bulletins of enabled him to perform what he has done; could they his health, habits, or motions; yet their right to speak, qualify him for the services of a great diplomatic minisand our right to hear, cannot be questioned, when those ter? Do not these require sound judgment, deen, extenwho know and could tell us the whole truth, persevere in sive, and regular thinking; laborious perseverance in a safe and cautious silence.
business; and, above all, prudence, and vigilant circumspecIf we are left by the Secretary without knowledge of tion? In his thirty years' public service, where are the his movements or localities, we are equally uninstructed monuments of his political wisdom, and labors of patriotby him concerning the health of this ambassador. We ism? They are all of a piece; of one uniform character, are merely told that he has already availed himself of his and this Russian residence will neither give the blush or right, by the terms of his commission, to abandon the the palm to any other public transaction of this remarkable public service. In what state of health was he then, is man throughout his political life. he now, or probably will he be, at any future time? For, With a perfect knowledge of this man, the Secretary legislating on this subject, in what a luminous condition of State could not have contrived this legation, so difthis prescient Secretary has placed this House! We have ferent from all others, with any view to the public service. an equally distinct view of the past, the present, and the This man was sent out not to benefit the people abroad, future. Does any gentleman of this committee possess but to relieve the administration at home. The crafty the power to tell us whether John Randolph might now, Secretary had witnessed the political movements of this or ever can be required, by the terms of his legation, to eccentric man. He feared the comet might return again, return to the court of Russia? Is not this salary intended and visit his political hemisphere. He had seen it blaze to be given to him for the distinguished services already in periheliumrendered at that court? If his health continue to require “ With fear of change perplexing men in power." it, he bas, we are told, the right to choose his place of Was it not prudent to remove this star of malign influence residence. What are, what have been, his own opinions, to another sky? It has been done; and the nation must concerning that health? You have all seen him walk into pay, not for a mission made for the advancement of their this House, and out of it, and must know his own opinions interests, but made to sccure the political power of the concerning his own health. We have often heard him Secretary. pronounce his chronic complaint "a churchyard cough. We have been toll that our relations with Russia are In winter, " he should not live over corn planting;" in of high and important interest; and, therefore, we cannot seed time, he should die before harvest." He has for dispense with this appropriation, because, if we refuse years been travelling from New York to Liverpool, from this salary, we shall defeat the mission. Should this misEngland to France, from America to Europe, and from sion, by which no public benefit was intended, and from Europe to America, in pursuit of health. Has he not, which one can be hoped, be recalled, it may be replaced from all this, learned that neither time nor travel can bring by one of better purpose, and efficient character. It is back to age the bloom of youth, nor to infirmity the vigor an obstruction in the “straightforward” path of our reof health? Were he, at this moment, to walk into this lations with Russia, and we are laboring to abate, or to hall, wrapped from the floor to the eyes in flannel and remove it out of the way. fearnought, what would he tell you, sir, concerning his Our relations with that Government are truly important. health?" What of his intended residence in Russia? No, Tbat empire is perhaps the most numerous in population, sir, if he be the judge-(and who but he can be the judge and certainly the most extensive in territory, of any Power of his own health?) he will never again return to the on the globe. No nation of the old world, otherwise than court of the Czar. We are, therefore, directed and re- by colonies, approaches so near to us. This people is adquired, by the Secretary of State, to appropriate this vancing in civilization, wealth, and power, beyond any item of $9,000, for the salary of a public minister, who example in its former history. In the last controversy of has been in the public service, at the place of his destined arms between Russia and the Ottoman empire, had not residence, not much more than a like number of days. other Powers of Europe interposed a shielding hand, the He arrived at St. Petersburg, was presented to the Em- moslem, after a dominion of inore than four centuries in peror, made his bow, or genuflexion, retired, and went to the fairest part of Europe, had been driven beyond the --England? France? Italy? or where? No mortal man, on Bosphorus; and the Autocrat of Russia would have asthis side the Atlantic, can inform us.
cended the throne of Constantine. At all times, our During this nine days' residence, what services did he relations with such a Power must be important to the render to the American people? The Secretary is satis- American people. Are those relations taken care of now, fied; and we surely ought not to be anxious about this as heretofore they have been, and as now especially they
We are told it is a matter exclusively within ought to bc? the competency of the Executive; and, therefore, it is, 1 Yes, sir, I say as now they shoull be. For now Europe
H. of R.]
Minister to Russia.
[Jan. 13, 1831.
is convulsed, and agitated from the Mediterranean to the his hand there, have felt something on his face different Baltic. The flame of war is but just repressed. Troops from the eternal smile. Who is this secretary of legation? are called into the field, in almost every nation; and Rus- The protege of the minister, John Randolph Clay--a lad sia, in a kind of winter campaign, has sent out 200,000 of less, or certainly not more, than twenty-one years old; soldiers to her southwestern frontier, to look out on the undistinguished by talents, education, or employment; old battle fields of Belgium and France. In this condition without acquaintance with men, or things, or business; of Europe, do we not require an able, a diligent, a a youth to whom fame has not, nor have his friends, atresident minister at Russia? Withhold this appropria- tributed any thing extraordinary, either in possession or tion, abolish this sinecure legation, and this may be ef-promise; and with nothing but his surname to recommend fected.
to public attention. I would not, I cannot speak in deroOne other fact in the history of our diplomacy renders gation of this youth; and all I would say is, that he must the residence of a skilful, faithful minister at that court, be utterly unqualified for the public station where he is at this time, above all others, indispensable. We learn placed. The service requires men; the nation has able from the Department of State, through the same medium, men--Herculean men. Why then hazard our interests, this message, that a treaty of amity and commerce has perhaps our peace, by placing the weight of empires on been negotiated between the United States and the Sub- the slender shoulders of boyhood? Let us strike out this lime Porte. The Secretary, with great candor, told us appropriation, that this sinecure, this state mission, may what this Turk had agreed to do for the christian, but be avoided; that the minister may return to his “constihe, with great caution, concealed what the christian had tuents,” the Secretary to his studies; and that the Presiagreed to do for the Turk. This gentleman is as well dent may send a legation to Russia fit for the public service. persuaded as the French monarch was, that “he who As it will not be contended that this appropriation knows not how to dissemble, knows not how to rule.” should be made, because the gentleman, who may take Rumor has run clean counter to Mr. Van Buren; for the benefit of it, is a native of Virginia, so may gentlemen though she often tells more than the truth, she never be assured that these remarks have no sectional origin; tells less. What have we learned from this witness? Why and I utterly disclaim any and all adversary feeling to truly that a secret article is contained in this treaty; and that distinguished commonwealth, her interests, and her this fact was, I believe, published in the newspapers be- citizens. I have spoken as one of the representatives of fore we received the message. It is said--it is believed, the American people; and as one coming from a part of that by this article the American people agree to furnish our common country which has done and will do as armed ships to the Sultan of Turkey, in his future wars much for the illustrious men of Virginia as any other part with christian nations. Do you believe, sir, that our of this nation. This appropriation is opposed because it envoy had left Constantinople before the Russian minister is intended to support a mission formed for purposes unat the port knew this fact? The very drogoman, by whom connected with the public interests, places our foreign your Mr. Rhind talked with Reis Effendi, would, for half relation in peril, and' is without any justification in law, a plate full of piastres, have told the whole story to Count usage, or constitutional principle. Orloff; and sworn he was doing good service to the pro Mr. J. S. BARBOUR, of Virginia, said that he would phet, by betraying one christian dog to another. Sir, has briefly reply to the gentleman from Rhode Island, [Mr. friendship for the Russian empire been so cherished by Burges.] the present sovereign, and his illustrious predecessor, Mr. B. said he felt the entire force of the duty to do so, that it has become a sentiment of the American people and its obligations could not be lightly regarded. In a Is not this secret article a diplomatic fraud, not only on subject for grave legislation, involving considerations that that friendship, but, which it quite as much concerns us deserved to be well weighed, and in the calmest deliberato consider, upon that sovereign who has so generously tion, it miglit be hoped that faction and party would have cherished it? I say nothing now of what may happen if paused in reflection. This hope was vain. The infusion the Turk should again war upon the Greek; or how it of party malignity had already embittered and discolored may comport with the republican principles of the Secre- the debate. Will gentlemen allow no moment of repose tary of State, when he shall call on this House to furnish to the inflamed and angry passions of political warfare? ships to that despot, thereby aiding him in bringing that Is discord to banish harmony from our councils, and conpeople again under his iron yoke. What shall we say to sign to party all the duties that belong to, and are involv. the Emperor of Russia? Who shall make our explanation, ed in, the name of country? The tendency and effect of if we have any to make? It is probable that the news of these things cannot be mistaken or disguised. Obscure this treaty, and perhaps a copy of it, reached the court them as gentlemen may choose, the drift and intent of of St. Petersburg shortly after our minister left that city. discussions like this cannot be mistaken. The gentleman The shortness of his residence there; the suddenness of from Rhode Island has kindled his sensibilities, and indulged his departure; the intelligence of this secret article; the in those malevolent epithets that cloud the debate, and surintended sojourn of that minister, perhaps in England-- render the judgment a victim to feeling. He asserts that perhaps in France; the attitudes of the nations of Europe, Executive influence controls the action of the House, by all giving dreadful note of preparation for war, must have declaring that subserviency to Executive will is far behad some tendency to place our relations with Russia on yond all past extent in the history of this country. Sir, a footing not the most firm and friendly. Does not sound if this be the dominant vice of the age, it carries alongpolicy--does not national good sense, call on the Ameri- side of it a countervailing antidute. The present times are can people to have an able minister at that court, and fruitful of usparing hostility to the Executive. But, said that, too, right speedily? Have we one there now? Under Mr. B., the gentleman is entirely at fault. His assertion the mission for which this appropriation is to be made, is a figment of the fancy, and has no foundation in reality. are we likely soon, or ever, I do not say to have such a If there be any thing at this tiine more remarkable than man there, but to have there any minister at all? all other things, it is the utter absence of Executive influ
In answer to all these anxious forebodings, we are told, ence over the deliberations of this House as well as the that, in this absence of the minister, the secretary of lega- Senate. I think that I perceive and could trace the causes tion takes very special and satisfactory care of our rela- that produce this state of things; but it would be a protions at the court of St. Petersburg. if this were not too fitless pursuit, even if covered with the fullest success. It ludicrous, it must be received as a mere mockery of the is, however, a fact, as singular as it is true, that a PresiAmerican people. When this paragraplı came from under dent of the United States, holding in full and sure posseshis pen, nir. Secretary Van Buren must, if he had placed sion a larger share of popular ailection than the most of
Jax. 13, 1831.]
Minister to Russia.
[U. or R.
his predecessors, finds that most of his prominent recom- united with as gallant and devoted a band of patriots as mendations to Congress have been neglected. Invested as ever combated oppression in the Senate, or withstood it he is with the strongest evidences of popular regard, all in the field, overthrew that party to which the gentlehis more prominent recommendations have perished by man from Rhode Island belonged. in that great struggle inertion or rejection. This may present a question between between liberty and power, Mr. Randolph was true to the constituent body and their agents, of which I mean to the people. His matchless genius was exerted in favor of give no opinion. Those to whom the public weal has been popular freedoin--and this is his crime. His claims to entrusted, have, doubtless, acted upon their own views of public gratitude would be but a transcript of the records right and wrong. But this fact alone repels the ill-founded of the age in which he lived. No vituperation can sully insinuation of subserviency to Executive behests. his renown. History will record--justice will be done.
It has likewise been intimated from the same quarter, His reputation will be cherished by the present generation with a grace neither becoming nor decorous, that we are of men, and it will pass to posterity. The gentleman has called on to vote a salary to the American minister at the been pleased to notice the secretary to the Russian legacourt of St. Petersburg, because he is a Virginian. Now, tion, and has applied to him some of those epithets he has sir, my worthy colleague, who sits before me, [Mr. Ar- always at command. It is enough, in reply, to say, that CHER,) used no language, employed no expression, that those to whom the constitution has confided the power force and ingenuity unitedcould torture into such meaning, and the duty to judge of his fitness and abilities, have no Vindication against such a charge is entirely unnecessary, doubt discharged that office; and their decision, it is preas it regards the State or the ambassador in question. The sumed, may be safely trusted. But, says the gentleman, character of that ancient commonwealth, as well as he is "a böy, a beardless boy.” That epithet implies an that of her distinguished son, constitute an impregnable objection that is now out of time, for the Senate yesterfortress, that frowns on and defies the assault--a cha- day clothed him with the toga virilis, by confirming his racter that is not the fruit of a summer's day, but has been nomination. But, after all, what reason can be assigned dearly earned, in an age crowded with events that are why this House, acting as a moral agent, and influenced at the same time appalling, and sacred to the best and by those considerations which have moral weight, what highest interests of humanity. When my colleague ad- sound and valid reason, I repeat, can be assigned for verted to the genius and services of Mr. Randolph, he withholding this salary? The President appointed the remarked that Virginia had illustrated the distinction of minister to Russia, and the Senate, as is known, confirmed her partialities in that uncommon confidence which was the nomination, not only without the show of serious opreposed in his virtues and his talents. And this is all position, but with a promptitude that indicated no wish he said relating to Virginia. I will take leave, too, to say, for opposition. The minister accepts the office, repairs that such confidence, so dearly earned, so fully possessed, to the theatre of its duties, and executes them. The and so merited, “is praise enough to fill the ambition of a frailty of his constitution rendering ill health possible, he common man;" ay, sir, of any man, be he whom he may. asked and obtained permission, if overtaken by disease, to I pass, said Mr. B., from this insinuation to another, seek a more genial clime. It was conceded to him with fraught with equal injustice. The member from Rhode perfect coherence to usage, propriety, and humanity. Island more than intimates that the State in which I live ile had fulfilled his undertaking to the letter, fairly, fully, was to be conciliated by this appointment. If, in this thoroughly; and I demand, will the Government meanly Union, or on this globe of eartlı, there be a State or em-violate its contract, and refuse the payment of the salary? pire beyond the reach of such vile seductions, it is the The discussion of the foreign relations of the country State on whom this tart reproach is cast. Virginia has have been obtruded into this debate. Matters of clelicate her principles, perhaps peculiar, and these she prizes and touching interest, still pending between this Governabove the temptations and treasures of earth. For she ment and others, have been drawn in, as if they were believes that with the maintenance of these is inseparably proper topics for discussion. of such matters, said wrapt up the happiness and the freedom of the commu- Mr. B., I claim to know nothing', except that their prenity: In support of this class of principles, she claims to sent introduction is unparliamentary, and discourteous to stand foremost in the field of contest; "and this is the the organs charged with our foreign concerns. Whenhead and front of her offending." I speak with justifiable ever these subjects shall become proper topics of debate, confidence when I say, that, in these times, neither Vir- my colleague, (Mr. ARCHER,) whose position in these ginia nor her citizens wished the honors of this Govern. affairs will then require and justify his speaking, will ment. It is not true in any case that high offices were doubtless supply the just calls that may be made upon him. sought after or obtained by any of her sons through un I have thus far, Mr. Speaker, treated this question, in worthy means.
reply only to what has been urged on the other side. In It was said on a former but appropriate occasion, by this respect it is a subject important enough to engage Mr. Randolph, “that his feet had never been soiled by your best deliberations. I beg leave now to address a the dust of the anti-chambers.” He had been the light few words in a different view of the question. If it be and the ornament of this House and the Senate, in times important in its personal and party agject, that importwhen friends and foes guided the destinies of this country. ance dwindles into insignificance when we regard it in He had never bent his knee where his heart owed no re- reference to our constitutional powers. I mean in relation spect. We are arrogantly called on by the gentleman to the distribution of power among the several departfrom Rhode Island to point to the monuments of past ser- ments of the Government. It is here that it swells into vice that Mr. Randolph has left behind him. Sir, it was vast magnitude, and demands the most mature reflection. once said of a patriot, a soldier, and a statesman, whose Upon a proper subject, and at an appropriate time, deeds of renown are beyond the reach of praise or dis- none can deny to this House the rightful power to interpraise, that liis monument was erected in the hearts of pose its will between the public interests and the march his countrymen. Profiting by this figure, I beg leave to of folly and wickedness in a iad and faithless administrasay that Nlr. Randolph bas left with us one monument of tion. Whenever, in such cases, Congress is called on to his great services. It rests in the heart of the gentleman grant appropriations, I am not willing to concede that it from Rhode Island. Rising out of it to full view in this possesses a mere instrumental agency, while all deliberadebate, it is now seon sparkling in the glitter of his fancy, tive will is drawn to other departments. No, sir, no! But and now casting its malignant shadow over those services this is not the creation of a new mission. It is not a prowhich justice and history have already consecrated to spective matter. The thing is done, and beyond our conpatriotism and to glory. Mr. Randolph's great exertions, trol. The embassy itself is not objected to; the mission
H. OF R.]
Minister to Russia.
[Jan. 13, 1831.
is acknowledged to be highly necessary. The appoint. motives should even be harshly suspected. Equally uning power, with the co-operation of all those guards and fortunate is the gentleman's declaration, that it was not checks which the constitution for wise ends has put probable we would soon be represented at the Russian around it, have all concurred in approving the selection court, as it is the opposite conclusion to which a candid of the minister-and whilst you have the power, and the mind would come, from the language of the message. In power only, to withhold the appropriation, I deny that such a case, nothing could be certainly said, or promised; you have any right to interpose at this time. I deny that but enough was said to show that the President had a deyour power rests in the moral stability of justice. There finite hope that the minister would return in the spring are sometimes obligations of a higher nature, resting on to his post, with a full ability to give to his country the use governments as well as individuals, than those which of those talents and attainments by which he had become may be enforced by coercion-obligations which we can- so much distinguished at home. not disregard, without a reckless contempt for our loftiest The motion is not, therefore, sustained by the facts of duties. If we follow the constitution, and respect the the case: we are forced to look beyond them for the allotments of power, it seems to me impossible that the cause which induced it; and it seems to have been intendmind of man can bring to its aid a plausible pretext for ed to give an opportunity for an outpouring of party reinterposing the negative of this House upon a subject sentment, which has been the more violent and personal, entrusted to others. We have no right to resist their will, from having no substantial cause of complaint upon which when fairly moving in their sphere of conceded power. it would fasten its rancor. The gentleman from Rhode Alarming cases may sometimes arise, of such magni- Island (Mr. Burges] has indulged in a wide range of obtude or atrocity, as to require it. Such cases, when they servation, in no way connected with the subject, and by no do occur, set aside all law and all obligation; they furnish a means sanctioned by the remarks of the chairman of the law to themselves, which the public safety may constrain Committee on Foreign Relations, to which he more than us to follow.
once referred as an example, to protect him in his irreguMr. WAYNE observed, that when the gentleman from lar course. The House had understood the chairman to Ohio made the motion to strike from the bill under con- deprecate any reliance being placed upon newspaper sideration the appropriation for the salary of the minister conjectures and calumnies; but the gentleman had made to Russia, he had accompanied it with two declarations, them the basis of his argument, and his authority for facts neither of which was the fact, though both had the appears -and, until he had done so, the real subject of debate ance of being so. The moral apprehension of the gen. had not been lost sight of. What connexion, sir, with tleman will readily distinguish between them, and also his subject has the treaty with Turkey, or any one of suggest to him how far the difference in this instance had its articles, about which we cannot know any thing un. been accidenta). His declarations were, that the Presi- til it shall be ratified, or its provisions shall be divulged, dent had told us the United States was not represented by a vote of the Senate, unless information concerning it at the court of Russia, and that it was not probable we has been got by a shameless violation of fidelity to the soon would be; the last being an assertion of his own. constitution? Did the gentleman reflect upon the imThese were the reasons he had given to sustain his mo- propriety in a member of Congress giving, in debate, tion, and both he professes to have derived from the currency and consequence to mere newspaper surmise, message. Sir, the President, after stating our amicable concerning our foreign relations, which, whether it shall relations with Russia, and that no means will be left un- turn out to be true or false, might be hurtful to our inteemployed to promote them, and to improve the commer- rests, by a premature disclosure, of an increaseil suppocial intercourse between the two nations, sincerely regrets sition of its correctness, and before it is known what attito inform us, that extreme indisposition had compelled tude those who administer the Government have taken in the minister to leave, temporarily, his post, for a more relation to the subject of conjecture? Or does he think genial climate, and that this was a privilege which had it allowable, in the warfare of party, to catch at every been committed to the minister's discretion, in considera- suggestion which malice or curiosity may make of those tion of the extent to which his constitution had been im- now in power, and to argue from them as probabilities? paired in the public service. But the President also in such contentions, honor rejects the use of an untruth, states, he had received the most satisfactory assurances as readily as honor and humanity would refuse to wield that the public interests would not suffer in the minister's the poisoned weapon in war.
Did the historical reading absence, as it was his intention to keep up an intercourse of the gentleman noi remind him how often it has hapwith the Russian cabinet, through the secretary of lega- pened in negotation, that an inadmissible article is per. tion. So far, then, sir, from not being represented, wemitted to be a part of a treaty by a minister not having full are informed that, notwithstanding disease had forced the power to ratify it, in the expectation that its temporary minister to leave St. Petersburg for a time, he was, admission will be productive of ultimate good? But, sir, though under its pressure, not unmindful of his duty, of we know nothing of that treaty; and I abstain from furthe particular interests which had been confided to him, ther notice of that part of the gentleman's speech, beand of the welfare of his country. How different is this lieving, whilst the treaty is under consideration in the statement from the naked declaration of the gentleman, Senate, conjectures of its contents, or any remarks conwhich, without any explanation from liim, implies an en- cerning it, to be altogether unbecoming here. The gen. tire suspension of all negotiation during the minister's tleman, however, is as little justified for having made absence, conveys an intimation that the public interest the qualifications and fitness of the minister to Russia a was suffering, and the imputation that the appropriation subject of inquiry and remark upon a motion to strike out was asked to pay for constructive and not for actual ser- the appropriation for his salary. When the right of vices. It may suit the gentleman's views to use his place appointment exists, and it is made and confirmed by the here to make such insinuations for circulation out of the Senate, the fitness of the individual is conclusive upon this House; but when they are unwarranted by the only docu- House, and a constitutional obligation is imposed upon it ment which we have to give us information upon this to co-operate in voting the supply to support the minister; subject, and upon which he makes his assertions, and and our only constitutional check upon the disbursement that one written in so plain, unaffected, and candid a man- of it is a right of inquiry into its application. A call ner, that it cannot be mistaken, but by great carelessness, upon us to refuse the supply in anticipation of its misapor á disposition to pervert it, he must bear the exposure plication is an indecency of assumption, which was unof the difference between his declarations and the author- known to the journals of our legislation until this motion ity upon which he rests them, and not complain if his was made. But why refuse the appropriation? The right
Jax. 13, 1831.]
Minister to Russia.
(H. or R.
of the President to extend to a minister the indulgence of any remarks that might fall from the gentleman from temporary removal from his post, in antic pation of a hos. Rhode Island, (Mr. Buruks.] It was impossible, howbile influence of climate uponliis health, cannot be denied; ever, to let them pass without some notice. The honorfor it (lnes not differ in effect from such allowance after able gentleman, said Mr. C., has given us an clalı-ate the ravages of climate have been felt, and the latter, and minute account of our treaty with the Porte: assuinthough often done, has not been heretofore a subject of ing lis own facts, he has discusserl its merits, and animadcomplaint or of reproach against any minister or any a:l- verted on its imaginary imperfections. I shall not, Mr. ministration under which ii has happened. The same Speaker, travel out of my way, and violate a rule of or. principle produced the law which gives to a member of sler, by entering now into that iliscussion, by examining Congress his pay, if, after having begun his journey to the provisions of the Turkish treaty. Whenever I do, Washington, he shall be overtaken with sickness, and he sir, my facts and my arguments shall be founded on someprevented by it from reaching the capitol during the thing more substantial than a newspaper rumor; more session. The exercise of the President's discretion, there- unquestionable than the statement of an unprincipled fore, in this instance, is stricily in analogy with our legis- partisan; more unimpeachable than the evidence of a lation for ourselves; and for ny own part, I cannot but perjured Senator. The gentleman has introduced other think it was highly commendable in Mr. Randolph, when inatters into this debate. We heard something of the wily he accepted the mission, to have warned the administra- policy of a Alachiavel; of the deep and designing motion that his health, though then good, inight be affected tives of a distinguished member of the cabinet; of “our by the climate of Russia-patriotic in him to have incur- minister to Russia, and his master the Secretary of State;" red a risk which very few men of feeble constitution would even, sir, endorsing, by insinuation, the stale slanders of have encountered, and doubly so on one, with his fortune the press. Mr. Speaker, I disclain to engage in such a and at his time of life, to have determined to encounter debate with the gentleman from Rhode Island. I conde. the climate of St. Petersburg again, after having suf-scend to notice his remarks, only to repel and to defered to the extent he has done, and in the way he had nounce bis unworthy insinuations. No, sir, I shall not apprehended. What was thouglit possible, or even pro- contend with him-age cannot dignify the slanderera bable, if gentlemen will rather 'please to have it so, has boary head, thouglı «crammed with Ætna's fires,” cannot occurred to an extreme degree; and because disease, in purify calumny, or sanctify it to the touch of honorable a forcign climate, has driven one of our most distinguished men. I have done with the gentleman from Rhode Island. men from the theatre of his services for a few nionths, Let us turn, for a moment, sir, to this extraordinary there are those to be found licre, who, instead of having motion to strike out the salary of our minister to Russia. a generous sympathy for the sufferer, seize upon his I feel, Mr. Speaker, a proud satisfaction, that, amidst all affliction to vent the bitterness of party resentments. the angry and violent collisions of our late political conThere are periods which will permit no limit to our de- test, the party with which I have the honor of acting votion to the public service; but when no such crisis never disgraced itself by a motion similar to that proposed impends, the man who, without being allured by the dis- by the gentleman from Ohio, and sustained by the gentinctions or the emoluments of office, exposes bimself at tleman froin Rhode Island. [Here the SPEAKER called the call of his country to what he knows may be uncom- air. CAMURELENG to order.] I claim, sir, the privilege of monly hazardous to his health, deserves uncominon praise. reply; I claim the privilege of vindicating my party, and But, sir, the minister is only known to me by his fame, have only to lament that others have not betier appreand I refrain from trespassing upon the generous anxiety ciated their own dignity. In all that angry war, sir, we of others who know hin well, to protect hina from impi- had no instance so degrading as a motion to strike out the tation. The gentleman argued the question also with a salary of a minister on account of absence or indisposition. view to make the impression upon the public, that, in any When our late estimable minister to France visited the event, whether the minister should return or not to his waters of Aix la Chapelle, did any one on our side of post, it was intended by the administration to apply to his the House humble himself and his cause by inquiring uses the entire salary for a year. This point, however, whether he had the permission of his Government to go is regulated by law; and it will be a difficult matter for there? Did any meinber of this House disgrace. bis the gentleman and his coadjutors to make even a faint country by a motion to strike out his salary, because the impression, that those who have been so recently engaged same minister had visited the lake of Geneva? No, sir. in correcting abuses in our diplomatic expenditures will When the late administration appointed an aged invalid-subject themselves to any imputation from those who have a venerable, distinguished, and highly respected gentlebeen shamed by their vigilance. Nor can I agree with man--our minister to Great Britain; when that venerable the gentleman, that, at this crisis in the aflairs of Europe, gentleman, notoriously in a rapid decline, was appointed our interests have or can suffer by the absence of mir. to the most important and urgent mission within the gift Randolph. The Emperor and his cabinet have been en- of the Executive-- was any member of our s'de so lost to gaged in more intense occupations, to the probable exclu- decency and humanity, as to inquire whether he had the sion of such remote connexions as he has with us; and permission of his Government to visit the waters of nothing can occur affecting the nations of Europe, and Cheltenliam! After that distinguished gentleman bad having any bearing upon our interest, which will not be visited the court of St. James, had resided there, and reas soon communicated to us through other channels, as it turned an invalid, physically and unfortunately incapable would be by the minister from St. Petersburg. But, sir, of discharging any one of the important duties assigned I will say no more. This motion is well understood; it is him by the late administration--was there, sir, one intended to accomplish nothing here, but has been made poor among ns, as to move to strike out his salary! No, for outdoor effect; and the people will be as apt to de- sir, no. We played a nobler game, and won it. Mr. tect the sinister design, as gentlemen have been to hope, Speaker, it is the fortune--nay, the high privilege of and anticipate, and to insinuate, that something would illustrious men, to be calumniated and pursued with bitter grow out of this trifling appropriation, which would fur- hostility. Our minister to Russia cannot escape--for he nish them with a subject of reproach against the adminis- has occupied a high station in the political annals of our tration. They will be disappointed.
country-he has obtained for himself an illustrious rank Mr. CAMBRELENG expressed his regret that, at so in our parliamentary history. I have listened, sir, with late an hour, he should be obliged to trespass on the at- delight and instruction to some of our distinguished rivals tention of the House. He regretted, too, that any cir- for parliumentary fame--to the simple, but persuasive cumstance should render it necessary for him to notice and fascinating reasoning of a Lowndes--to the melodious